Did you know that within two hours of Pitzer’s campus, you can be transported to magical landscapes filled with snow, sand, odd creatures and plants of all shapes and sizes, and a vast array of inspirational, fun-filled adventures?
Well, now you do!
Here are just a few of the stupendous places I have been able to explore through Orientation Adventure trips and through the club, Pitzer Outdoor Adventure.
- Pitzer Outback: The remaining piece of land on the far north end of campus that, through the efforts of the Restoring Nature course and the Outback Restoration Project, has maintained one of the rarest ecosystems in the world: Alluvial Sage Scrub. Just a few steps out of the residence halls, you can be enveloped in the beauty of Southern California.
- Claremont Wilderness Trail: A 5 mile walking/running/biking loop that is only 3 miles away from our campus. Ideal for a quick get-away to fulfill many outdoor needs.
- Mt. Baldy: A Pitzer classic, Mt. Baldy stands tall directly north of our campus and provides spectacle and exploration for many an interest. Camping, hiking, and sunset-gazing are just a few of the possibilities that this space allows for. There is even snow in the winter! Especially frequented by Pitzer students during a full moon.
- Joshua Tree: Finding inspiration here is not difficult as you sit atop a stack of boulders and look out over vast desert dreamscape. A quick drive out east and you will find one of the most unique national parks I have ever stepped foot in.
- Salton Sea & Salvation Mountain: Another desert adventure just out beyond Joshua Tree, the Salton Sea is an oddity created by a human error in the early 1900s. Once a desert oasis, and now lined with nearly-abandoned towns, this space always has something interesting to offer. In one of the coastal towns, Niland, you will find another oddity, a colorful man-made mountain created by one devoted man, Leonard Knight.
- Whiting Ranch: One of the first adventures of my Pitzer life, hiking through Whiting Ranch was a surprise to say the least. Located amongst the developed landscape of Orange County, you will find forest, rocky wash, and giant sandstone cliffs, revealing the underlying makeup of the OC.
- Laguna Beach: My favorite of the lovely beaches of Southern California, Laguna Beach has rocky cliffs and turquoise waters that are always just warm enough to jump into.
- Santa Barbara: A shameless plug for my hometown. Santa Barbara has beautiful beaches and beautiful mountains. What more can you ask for?
- Jenny Lakes Wilderness: A bit farther than the rest, this piece of Sequoia National Forest has beautiful backpacking with multiple lake-side stops. I was lucky enough to lead a backpacking trip here as one of the Orientation Adventure leaders for incoming first-year students.
- Catalina Island: Actually a magical mermaid land of natural beauty! Just a short drive and a misty ferry-ride away from campus, this trip is one of the options for Orientation Adventure trips at the beginning of the year. Plenty of kayaking, hiking, beach camping, and friendship.
Now it’s your turn!
Posted by Casey Venturelli ’16, Interdisciplinary Movement Studies & Holistic Healing (self-designed)